Darien limousine Chicago airport ... Chicago Drug testing

Is Your Business Profitable?

What's your job profitability? Do you know?

Many business owners are unsure of their profitability at a company or job level. They "think" they are making money because they have a few dollars in their checking account. Having money in your checking account doesn't mean you are profitable. It might simply mean you haven't paid all the bills yet, so you have a little cash. Cash and profit are two different concepts. If you don't know your exact income and expenses for each job and your overall business, then how can you know whether you are making a profit? And, if you aren't profitable, your business won't last long.

Analyze Each Job

Regardless of the size of your business or your industry, profitability is something you should be monitoring on a monthly basis. To determine your profit, you must know how much you make and spend on each job. Expenditures should be tracked for direct labor and material costs on each job. In addition, you should also be tracking overhead costs and allocating them to your various jobs as applicable. There is always going to be some general overhead, but too often dollars are thrown into general overhead, when those dollars could easily be attached to specific jobs.

Intuit's QuickBooks software program has easy-to-use features that allow you to do job-costing for time and materials, so you don't have to worry about having to track it all manually. Rely on tools to help you run your business more efficiently and effectively.

Are you curious how you are doing with job costing measurements? Here are some quick and easy questions to gauge your job costing performance:

1. Do I track each customer's revenue information through a detailed invoice?

2. Do I have a way of breaking down my direct job materials cost by customer?

3. Do I associate all time spent to each job accurately with actual dollar amounts?

4. Do I have access to reports to monitor profitability on each job in a timely manner?

5. Do I have a way to trend the fluctuations in job profitability from job to job, month to month, etc?

If you answered "no" to any of these, then it's time for you to take an objective look at your financial goals. It's time for you to implement a job costing mechanism to help you answer "yes" to all these questions. How can you track your profitability and long-term growth plans if you don't have detail at a job level?

QuickBooks Can Help

Here are some easy ways to utilize QuickBooks effectively to help you with your job-costing process:

1. Set up the QuickBooks Item list so that you'll have both an expense and an income aspect to each of the items. This will allow you to track your costs and your income, and will provide you profit by item.

2. Record your sales through the invoicing or sales receipt process. This will record the income aspects of the items.

3. As you purchase the product or service items, make sure that you utilize the Items tab so that it will record the cost to the appropriate item. In addition, make sure to assign your customer/job information to each line item so that you'll have the costs associated to the appropriate customer/job for job-costing.

4. Utilize the time-tracking mechanism in QuickBooks so that you and your employees can track time by item and customer/job. No dollar value is associated with this time until you actually pay the employees within QuickBooks.

5. QuickBooks has preformatted reports that you can access to have job-costing information right at your fingertips. These are found under the Reporting menu and the Jobs/Time/Mileage option.

6. QuickBooks has the ability to provide reports for any time period you select. This will allow you to have a variety of detail over the growth of your business and to produce trending reports. You can modify the report as needed to meet your needs.

A good accounting professional can help you understand what these reports are telling you, in terms that you can use. Reports alone don't provide value if you don't understand them. So it is key that you understand the reporting information and how you can use that information to assist you in decision-making as you grow your business profitably.

Job-costing is easier when you set-up your accounting/bookkeeping software package and know how to use it. So, challenge yourself today to become more adept at running a financially savvy business through job-costing. Then, you'll know, without a doubt, whether your company is profitable.

Copyright 2005 Pam Newman

Pam helps business owners keep money from slipping through their fingers. She is a Certified Management Accountant, Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor, and Author of Out of the Red and Unlocking the Secrets of QuickBooks. For more information, you can visit our website at http://www.quickbooksinformation.com

In The News:

The official start of fall may be Tuesday, but forecasters in Arizona recently spotted a sight in the sky more fit for Halloween.
A wildlife photographer in Scotland has captured remarkable images showing a red squirrel reaching out for hazelnuts encased in a miniature grand piano, British news agency SWNS reports.
A newly published study says that global sea levels could rise more than one foot by 2100, should greenhouse gas emissions continue at their current pace.
A snorkeler has suffered a severe shoulder injury after being “attacked almost immediately” by a shark when he entered the waters near a lighthouse in the Florida Keys, police say. 
Just days after scientists said they discovered the presence of phosphine in the clouds of Venus, the head of Russia's space agency declared "Earth's evil twin" a "Russian planet."
The US wild pig population is soaring and rapidly multiplying, which experts believe is a ticking 'feral swine bomb,' according to a report on Saturday.
Archaeologists have identified the wreck of a 19th-century slave ship off Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula.
A man in Florida was bit by an alligator and nearly dragged into a canal behind his home last Sunday, all while walking his dog.
A newly published study is warning that there will be 53 trillion metric tons of plastic pollution in the world's rivers, lakes and oceans by 2030.
Newly published research suggests that some exoplanets in deep space largely comprised of carbon could turn into diamonds.

Credit Repair Business Opportunities - Huge Profit Potential!

In the world today, many people are further in debt... Read More

Small Business Marketing Secrets: Look Like Sizzle, Be The Steak

You've heard marketing and advertising gurus quip, "Sell the sizzle,... Read More

Pressure Washing of Paving Equipment and The EPA

Many pressure washing companies will be glad to take on... Read More

Small Business Owners - Form a Relationship with Your Bank Manager

It's just like a marriageTo expect a bank manager or... Read More

Eight Key Steps to Selling Your Business and Cashing In

This year, some 700,000 American businesses will be sold. Most... Read More

Essex Accountants: Top Things to Look For

One of the most common horrific mistakes a business can... Read More

Pressure Washing Companies; Pricing Dock and Deck Cleaning

If you own a Pressure Washing Company and wish to... Read More

Top 10 Lessons for Small Business Success - As learned From My Twin 3 Year Olds

Small business success is very similar to learning to walk,... Read More

Creative Metrification - A Technique to Improve

Some things in business are relatively easy to measure ?... Read More

Expand Your Professional Organizer Business

Grow your Professional Organizer business by branching out into related... Read More

Measuring Your Way to Success

Are you a motivational speaker who consistently gets rave reviews... Read More

Hard Money Lenders -- No Money Down The Easy Way

Would it help you as a real estate investor to... Read More

Trailblazer Interview with Diane J. Levin, Partnering Solutions

Today is a Red Letter Day! It's special because today... Read More

More Rules for Franchising?

The FTC- Mighty Federal Trade Commission has unilaterally decided to... Read More

3 Ways To Make Certain Your Business Fails

Most small businesses incorporated in 2005 will fail by the... Read More

Franchise Buyers Lying On Forms

The Federal Trade Commission which governs the franchise industry thru... Read More

7 Card Tricks That Improve Your Personal Networking Power

CARD SHARK7 Card Tricks That Improve Your Personal Networking PowerThe... Read More

California Department of Corporations Attempts to PR Their Benefits to Consumers

On Monday the Department of Corporations in California revoked franchise... Read More

Work is a Four Letter Word

I love work, I can watch it all day.I am... Read More

Setting Up a Pressure Washer Rig to Clean Concrete

Maximum efficiency in the cleaning industry is a key to... Read More

QSR Quick Service - Fast Food Restaurants Labor Situation in United States

One of the major complaints in the QSR Quick Service-Fast... Read More

From Birth to Death

Your product is dying. With the same inevitability that we... Read More

Small Business and Wichita

Owning a small business in Wichita, KS might not be... Read More

Common Mistakes When Planning Your Medical Spa

Everything starts with a business plan: If you don't have... Read More

Seven Common Mistakes Made By Small Business Owners

Most new small businesses won't be in business this time... Read More

home additions for dummies adding an extension to a house ..